Christmas morning should have been a happy time for Jim Reeve, Shannon Johnson and their son Jacob. After they opened presents with Shannon's sister Adrienne, Jim went out for a cup of coffee. That was the last time he would ever see their miniature poodle, Max, alive and well.
Upon returning home, Jim walked into a surreal nightmare scene of blood-spattered hallways and a traumatized family. Their beloved Max lay clinging to life, fatally injured by a large pit bull type dog which had rushed into their home and brutally attacked when Shannon answered a knock at the door. Max died hours later as the vet tried in vain to save him.
Unfortunately, their experience is not unique. Family pets are attacked by pit bulls in their own yards and even in their own homes with a disturbing frequency. In these all too common events, pit bulls are doing precisely what they were bred to do: attack and kill dogs.
This heartbreaking ordeal was hard on the family. Jim had purchased the poodle for his son Jacob in the hopes that he would be good for him and help him deal with the challenges of autism. Max had been helping Jacob relate to animals properly and was making a difference in Jacob's life. The boy and his dog were best friends, and for Jacob to see a pit bull tear his best friend apart in his own home was extremely traumatic.
Jim recalls that day: "After the attack we had to cancel two Christmas dinners. We had family coming down from up north and had to tell them to stay home. And animal control released the pit bull back to the owners because my dog didn't die right away."
In other words, the fact that Max suffered for hours while thousands of dollars were spent trying to save him equated to a less serious attack than if Max had died immediately.
Jim continues "I also remember filing for freedom of information, in which I was denied anything of relevance. The person that plead guilty to being the owner of the pit bull lives only a couple blocks away from me and never thought to call me when it happened."
And so, as if the Christmas day home invasion mauling wasn't bad enough, the attacking pit bull was promptly released back to its owner.
For this family, Christmas is forever ruined. If this had been an isolated incident, some sort of freak accident, that would be one thing, but sweet, docile family pets are being mauled to death on their own property far too often. Unless society demands action, the problems with unregulated pit bulls will continue to worsen.
As if to rub salt in an open wound, the pit bull activists weighed in predictably on the attack, saying things like "why did your wife open the door?" and "that's what happens when dogs fight!"
|Max (RIP) shown in happier times|
Original news story